The ACC went through a series of new hires during the recent off-season with Syracuse, Virginia, Virginia Tech and Miami all hiring new head coaches. However, a few ACC head coaches remain close to the hot seat should they fail to bring about improvements in the 2016 season:
ACC Head Coaches on the Hot Seat
Dave Doeren (North Carolina State)
The Wolfpack have gone 6-18 in ACC play since Dave Doeren took over in 2013. They’ve actually managed to make two bowl games, even with this record, but scraping bowl eligibility is no longer enough to satisfy the fan base. The Wolfpack needs to take the next step and start to beat some of the quality opponents in the ACC. They look to be battling for fourth in the ACC Atlantic this season, likely finishing behind Florida State, Clemson and Louisville. Replacing quarterback Jacoby Brissett is another problem facing Doeren this year, as is a pretty tough ACC schedule.
Steve Adazzio (Boston College)
With a very good defense in 2015, it’s surprising that Boston College won so few games. The offense was atrocious which led to them losing some low-scoring battles in conference play. The Eagles should see an improvement on that unit, with transfer quarterback Patrick Towles joining from Kentucky. However, the defense does lose a few key players, which means they could regress as a unit.
The key for Steve Adazzio in 2016 is to beat the other struggling ACC teams in conference play. They get Syracuse at home and Wake Forest on the road, and are favored to win all of their non-conference games. Six wins and a bowl game should certainly buy Adazzio more time.
Dave Clawson (Wake Forest)
The Demon Deacons were very young across the depth chart for the past two years, which partly explains their struggles to win games, especially in conference. This year should see the team continue to mature and benefit from both experience and greater depth at several positions. It’s the year where the team should take a step forward and improve their win total by two or three games from 2015.
Facing Syracuse, Virginia and Boston College at home gives them every chance to move out of the bottom spot in their division. We’ve seen many head coaches rebuild a program yet fail to turn potential into improvement on the field and this might be the year for Dave Clawson to produce those results.